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‘Varshangalkku Shesham’ Review: A Typical Bubble-Wrapped Vineeth Sreenivasan Goodness Overload

Varshangalkku Shesham is filled with inside jokes, mild social critiques, and regular collaborators of Vineeth Sreenivasan, keeping the film a truly job guarantee scheme for his friends. 

Varshangalkku Shesham

Demanding a Rajeev Ravi film on a Vineeth Sreenivasan movie ticket is silly. If you don’t like the elements that define a Vineeth Sreenivasan movie, Varshangalkku Shesham is not going to be your cup of tea; but if you are a fan of the bubble-wrapped delicateness of his movie-making, Varshangalkku Shesham is Exhibit A. 

For the unreserved, Vineeth, the eldest son of noted Malayalam screenwriter and actor Sreenivasan, is a filmmaker known for his feel-good stories coated with preachy motivation and an overload of goodness. In Vineeth’s cinematic universe, everything has a warm color tone, people are nicer than usual, romances are over the top, characters who struggle in life can still afford a cozy studio apartment, every character gives free advice to the squandering male lead, and every door he apparently knocks on seems to open. Now, put all these elements together, and you get a blueprint of what to expect from Varshangalkku Shesham.

The film opens with a school-going Dhyan Sreenivasan (Venu Koothuparambu), reminiscent of his carefree character in Kunjiramayanam (2015). Venu is not a bright student, but he reads literature and is passionate about films. He dreams of making it to Madras, where the South Indian film industry is making magic. Venu meets Murali (Pranav Mohanlal), a part-bohemian, part-mystic, part-troubled musical genius during a theatre performance. Venu sees firsthand how Murali could easily capture the attention of an audience. He reciprocates the magic by writing the final chapter of a Russian novel in Malayalam, out of thin air. Murali, an ardent devotee of scotch and the enigmatic communist leader E. M. S. Namboodiripad, stays away from fame. However, Venu is practical. So, when they both catch a train to Madras to be a part of the magic of cinema, Venu naturally makes it to the top, while Murali struggles to mend his ways. The friends drift apart, and now they have a lifetime to patch up and have a date with their destiny.

Varshangalkku Shesham

Varshangalkku Shesham has a runtime of 165 minutes. It goes from one flashback to another, and Dhyan Sreenivasan transforms from a 15-year-old to a grey-haired veteran filmmaker tossed into oblivion. Dhyan gives an earnest performance, but Pranav Mohanlal noticeably falls short with his acting chops. Pranav, sometimes, is a feeble version of the characters his father, Mohanlal, portrayed. Vineeth, who is also the writer, deliberately milks the nostalgia of superhit films Mohanlal and Sreenivasan once acted together to stage comedy scenes. There are plenty of references, but none fit the material at hand. 

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A brilliant performance comes from Aju Varghese, who time and again proves his insane comedic timing. Kalyani Priyadarshan played the love interest of Venu, but her role was often limited to being the eye candy. However, the most explosive performance came from Nivin Pauly. Pauly played a flirty version of himself. His role of Nithin Molly is a young but fading superstar, whose last seven films flopped and who is constantly fat-shamed by social media scrutinizers. 

Pauly in real life was catapulted into fame after his 2015 movie Premam became a blockbuster. A self-made star with no godfather to back him, Pauly struggled to capture any considerable box office hits in recent times and continuously faced fat-shaming comments. In a rather light-hearted but strong-worded emotional outburst, Nithin Molly is seen venting his frustration in Varshangalkku Shesham. Ironically, this rant happens in a film that has at least four ‘nepo kids’, including the lead actors and the director.

Overall, the dialogue was below par, with the love language in romance and bromance sometimes hitting the roof of the cringe meter. The music dominated the film from the very beginning. For Vineeth, who is also a celebrated playback singer, music is just as essential as his feel-good philosophy. The soundtrack prominently features old-timey music, cover songs, and throbbing love ballads. The cinematography followed the warm tones and mystical ambiance. It was neat but ordinary. The film is filled with inside jokes, mild social critiques, and regular collaborators of Vineeth Sreenivasan, keeping the film a truly job guarantee scheme for his friends. 

Varshangalkku Shesham is treading on the same path as every other feel-good Vineeth Sreenivasan movie. Dhyan Sreenivasan carried this film on his own, while Pranav Mohanlal tried to put together his bohemian persona; however, this movie will be remembered for Nivin Pauly’s rant, which even though seemed like a comedy bit, feels like a genuine outburst he does in private very often.

Varshangalkku Shesham
‘Varshangalkku Shesham’ Review: A Typical Bubble-Wrapped Vineeth Sreenivasan Goodness Overload
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